Do you prefer SS or tube? Why?
Welcome to the AudioShark Forums.
Page 1 of 22 1 2 3 4 5 6 11 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 218
  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Location
    Southeast Iowa
    Posts
    487
    Post Thanks / Like

    Do you prefer SS or tube? Why?

    I'm a newb getting back into high end audio after a 40+ year hiatus. Just wondered if there's a clear cut favorite? I'm especially interested to hear why one is chosen over the other.

    Are tube amps generally considered superior or do they just sound different? It seems to me that high end audiophiles prefer tubes. But I've also read that there have been many improvements to SS amps making them the relative equals of tube amps.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    NY
    Posts
    16,392
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Do you prefer SS or tube? Why?

    For pure sound enjoyment, I prefer all tubes in my amp and preamp. I usually default to a tube preamp and solid state amp for convenience. Tubes require more maintenance but some of the newer or more advanced tube gear have protections built in for aging and failing tubes.

    Tubes are a little sweeter and can have a little more air and three dimension. Solid state is usually rock solid reliable. If you are a set and forget kind of guy, solid state is easier to use. Every amp and preamp sounds a little different and depending on speakers, you need to pick what sounds best to you.
    Joe

    Avantgarde Duo XD, Klipsch RB-75, Klipsch RP-160M, JBL 590.

    Accuphase E-650 w/ Dac, Job INTegrated, Naim Supernait 2 w/ HiCap-DR.

    Conrad Johnson GAT2, Wyred 4 Sound STP-SE Stage 2, Misho Myronov Wooden pre, Linear Tube Audio MZ2.

    First Watt SIT-1 monos, Misho Myronov Wooden amp, First Watt SIT-3, Luxman MQ-300, Job 250 Monos, Valvet E2se, NuForce STA200, AkitikA GT-102 amp, Cary 300B SE monos, ASL Wave monos, Dennis Had 45 monos.

    Lumin U1 mini, ModWright Ultimate Sony XA-5400ES, Audio Mirror Tubadour III NOS R2R Tube Dac w/ upgrades.

    Burmester 948, McIntosh MCLK12, Kimber Kable, Siltech, Cardas, Avanti Audio cables.

  3. Likes MikeCh liked this post
  4. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Posts
    169
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Do you prefer SS or tube? Why?

    Solid state. I have no desire to fuss with tubes.

  5. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Tallahassee, Florida
    Posts
    2,675
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Do you prefer SS or tube? Why?

    Like Joe I would prefer all tubes but in the end the heat from higher powered tube amps is too much so I end up with tube pre-amps and SS or Hybrid amps.
    Main - JVC QL-Y7/Denon DL-301 Mk II, Gold Note PH-10, Nuprime CDT-8, Auralic Aries G1, Aqua La Voce S3, PS Audio BHK preamp and 250 amp, Fritz Carrera Be, (2) Rythmik F12SE, Audio Envy IC's , Triode Wire Lab PC's & SC's, PS Audio Stellar P3, PI Audio Uberbuss, Timbernation rack

    Family Room - Oppo UDP-203, Teac NT-505, Audia Flight FL Three S, Nola KO, (2) Rythmik F-12G, Audio Sensibility SC & IC's, Neotech PC's, SurgeX SA-1810

  6. #5
    Audioshark
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Sarasota, FL
    Posts
    24,388
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Do you prefer SS or tube? Why?

    All tubes. But admittedly, solid state today is kicking ass and taking names.

    I guess I still find tubes still win out for ultimate organic sound.

    Love tubes on my guitar amp too.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    My Systems: http://www.audioshark.org/showthread...481#post158481

    "We can hear everything we measure, but we can't measure everything we hear. Let your ears be your guide."

    Dealer for: Aqua Hi-Fi, Audio Research, Aurender, AudioQuest Cables & Power Products, Avantgarde Acoustics, Avid HiFi, Ayre Acoustics, Berkeley Audio Design, Bowers & Wilkins (B&W), Bryston, Chord, Constellation Audio, FirstWatt, Focal Headphones & Loudspeakers, Furutech, Fyne Audio Loudspeakers, GigaFoil, Gryphon Audio, Harbeth Loudspeakers, Hegel, HiFi Man, iFi Audio, ISO Acoustics, JL Audio, Keces Power Supplies, Lumin, Luxman, Magico Loudspeakers, MBL Speakers & Electronics, MIT Cables, MSB Technologies, MySonicLabs Phono Cartridges, Naim Audio, Ortofon, Pass Labs, Quadraspire, Rega Turntables, Roon Labs, Shunyata Research, SimAudio, SRA, Stein Music Products, Stillpoints, T+A Electronics, VAC, Vicoustics, Viva Audio, VPI Industries.

    https://suncoastaudio.com/
    Phone: 941-932-0282
    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Suncoast-Au...1105178279194/

  7. #6
    Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Wilton, CT
    Posts
    95
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Do you prefer SS or tube? Why?

    Going from SS to tubes at the moment, enjoy tweaking the sound characteristics by rolling tubes, different flavors from the same amp! As has been said, many circuits are designed to minimize wear on the tubes so they can last a long time.
    Ron

    *Almarro A318B, Leben CS300xs, Elekit TU-8200, Metrum Onyx DAC, Metrum Baby Ambre Roon endpoint, sonictransporter i5, Roon, Tidal, VPI Scout SE, Graham Slee Reflex Gold; DeVore Gibbon The Nines; audience, auditorium, Zu, audioquest, shunyata cabling*

  8. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Location
    Southeast Iowa
    Posts
    487
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Do you prefer SS or tube? Why?

    Forgot to mention I use both tube and SS preamps for recording. I use the tube pre (Universal LA610) for vocals and bass and I use a SS pre (Millennia HV-3C) that's specifically designed for acoustic instruments) for acoustic guitar, banjo, and mandolin.

  9. Likes joeinid liked this post
  10. #8
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    1,804
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Do you prefer SS or tube? Why?

    I too prefer a tube or hybrid-tube pre-amplifier running with a solid-state power amplifier.

    It's kind of like the best of both worlds.

  11. Likes joeinid, a.wayne liked this post
  12. #9
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    St. Louis, MO, USA
    Posts
    1,320
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Do you prefer SS or tube? Why?

    Since I can't have both tube and SS systems at this point, I have solid state. I prefer the typically faster transients and leading edges solid state provides.

    The lines are becoming more blurred between the two in regards to killing stereotype sound characters. However, to get tubes that approach the control of SS, and SS with the virtues of tubes, you have to spend some sizeable sums of money.

    Another must for me is horse power. I suppose I could get pretty close to what I wanted in tubes with an Octave Audio integrated and an efficient speaker that sounded good.

    It really comes down to your taste and what your ears like. Though I listen to a lot of higher energetic music at time, if I had found what I was looking for in a more efficient speaker back when I had my CJ system, things might be different right now. I still may not have the leading edges or fastest transients, but there's trade offs and other aspects keep you from caring.
    Aurender ACS10 w/AQ Diamond,
    Mark Levinson #526 & 532h, JBL 4367's
    Clearaudio Performance DC w/Maestro cart
    All Clarus Crimson cabling, AC to binding post. Surgex
    HT: Marantz AV8003, Linn 5125, JBL SAM3ha, Revel s30,
    SVS PC13 Ultra
    Transparent, Analysis Plus & Tributaries. PS Audio filtering
    Sony XBR-75X940D & BDP

  13. #10
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    Front Row Center
    Posts
    2,361
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Do you prefer SS or tube? Why?

    No substitute for power IMO ,,

    Matching amp to load is whats most critical, a good SET on the right speaker load is hard to beat , i have in the past heard it done by well built and sorted SS amps , a rare beast today apparently ...

    Only a handful of Tooby amps actually sounds good , same for SS , SS works for me, Toobs do too ..

    All about the load ...

    Regards

 

 
Page 1 of 22 1 2 3 4 5 6 11 ... LastLast